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tline3open  Nice storage / display for Danish silver enamel cutlery

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Author Topic:   Nice storage / display for Danish silver enamel cutlery

Posts: 1
Registered: Apr 2024

iconnumber posted 04-17-2024 09:33 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Audrey9     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dear Silver community,

I have recently become interested in the gorgeous silver / silver gilt cutlery from Denmark, especially those with enamel.

My introduction was trying to find cutlery that was suitably dainty and had colours that matched my afternoon tea set, and it has now developed into a bit of a collection...

I would like to connect with other people with this specific interest to understand if any books have been written on the topic and also get your advice on a form of storage that is both beautiful and practical. I intend to use this set as often as I have a chance to, but realistically that is every 3 months or so, and probably only part of it as I don't often have 12 settings for some of it.

I know many of you rightly have a very pro-patina stance, but I am interested in keeping them bright: most of the spoons and forks were already polished and some (all?) of them are not that old (mostly 60s I would think). According to some Danish dealers they are mainly now turned into other products, but my interest is using them for afternoon tea - lovely how we used to be able to make such beautiful things - and funny that they are completely timeless.

I have an idea to organise them in shallow plastic (air tight?) boxes, possibly lined with pacific silvercloth, and then vacuum seal. Then they can be looked at (and shown off to fellow enthusiasts) when I am not throwing tea parties.

Welcome any thoughts or advice!

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iconnumber posted 04-20-2024 09:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for ahwt     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
When people refer to patina, I normally think of the surface change to silver not caused by tarnishing, but instead the result of the very gradual oxidation of sterling that occurs over many decades together with the diffusion of light from the surface by the many random and minute scratches that naturally occur by normal use. This patina provides a depth to the silver surface that does not occur in sterling that is new or has been buffed. After several hundred years it also results in a surface that can have a slightly bluest tinge.

Tarnish is normally thought of as the thin layer of darkness on the surface of sterling caused by the sulfur in the air. Tarnish is easily removed by products such as Wright's Silver Cream. This product, if used properly, does not remove the much sought after patina.
Keeping your silver in boxes lined with Pacific silvercloth is a good idea to lessen the tarnish caused by sulfur. It does not eliminate tarnishing completely but does decrease the need for polishing by many months. I think this is preferably to using a vacuum seal as that would also eliminate the natural process of oxidation. The latter is said by someone who enjoys the occasional polishing of silver.
I would love to see some of your cutlery. Perhaps the next time you have a tea party, take a picture of your table setting and share it with us.

[This message has been edited by ahwt (edited 04-21-2024).]

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iconnumber posted 04-25-2024 10:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kimo     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I very much agree with Ahwt about tarnish and patina being different things. Patina comes with great age and lends a piece of silver a dimension of beauty and history and presence that makes the piece something more than it was when it was sold new. Aggressive buffing or dipping in harsh chemicals remove this to the point that the piece of silver may have just as well been made yesterday. Also, aggressive buffing removes actual silver making the design less crisp which is not how it was meant to be by the designer. And, we do not talk about specific values on this Forum, but removing patina does significantly reduce a piece's future commercial value as few collectors prefer something without its expected patina. The good thing about collecting, though, is that everyone can collect in whatever way makes them happy so you should take these comments only as suggestions to consider and then go ahead and make your own decisions on whether you prefer to remove patina on your own pieces.

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